Weekly Warm-Up: Boost Your Layouts

02/15/2010 at 3:41 pm | Posted in weekly warm up | 2 Comments
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Dude! Are you ready to bust some huge air? The world’s best snowboarders take to the Vancouver slopes today, but they’re not the only ones ready to boost.

In snowboarding terms, “boost” means to catch air off a jump. Today, we’re going to take a few tricks from those snowboarders and catch a little air of our own as a weekly warm-up: boosting our layouts to the next level.

In some of the most spectacular tricks you’ll see today, snowboarders will use the walls and flat of the half-pipe to pull off some pretty amazing jumps, spins, and turns. It’s the very structure of the half-pipe—a vertical u-shaped structure—that makes those tricks possible. Snowboarders use the lines of the walls to generate enough speed and air to pull off those tricks.

And just like a snowboarder makes the most of the structure of the half-pipe, you can use the structure of lines to boost your layouts in the following five ways.

Use Grids

Rather than spend hours figuring out how to position numerous photos on a layout, use a grid positioned on a large photo mat to organize multiphoto layouts, as Jennifer Larson did here.

“My Best Buds” by Jennifer Larson, as seen in the January 2010 issue of Creating Keepsakes, page 42

Draw Straight Lines

There’s nothing wrong with a straight line. Lines actually help lead the eye through a layout—a particularly useful tool when leading the reader from the beginning to the end of a story. The trick is to mix it up by adding a larger photo as a focal point, just like Ria Mojica did on this layout.

The Long and Short of It” by Ria Mojica, as seen in the January 2010 issue of Creating Keepsakes,page 43

Create Borders

Use your photos to create a border, placing your journaling in the middle of your layout like Brigid Gonzalez did below. This approach allows both your story and your photos to share the spotlight. Check out this design tip: make sure all of your photos are facing into your layout, to keep the reader’s eye on your pages.

"How to Have Fun on a Rainy Day” by Brigid Gonzalez, as seen in the January 2010 issue of Creating Keepsakes, page 45

Add Motion

By adding a line through a layout, you can not only move your viewer’s eye through the layout, but also add motion to your pages. Notice how the line in Amanda Probst’s layout below mimics a sledding hill, reinforcing the theme of her layout.

"March in Colorado” by Amanda Probst, as seen in the Scrapbooking Tips & Tricks organization issue by Creating Keepsakes, page 18

Break the Lines

When designing, we tend to think of lines as boundaries—areas we cannot cross. But crossing those lines can actually add fun and whimsy to your pages. Take a look at Annette Pixley’s title on her “Dreams Come True” layout below. She could have confined her designs to the natural box that her focal photo and red background paper created, but she would have lost the whimsy created by overlapping these two elements with part of her title.

"Dreams Come True” by Annette Pixley, as seen in the January 2010 issue of Creating Keepsakes, page 45

For your weekly warm-up, try one of these five ways to boost your layouts. And once you’ve finished busting some air, upload your completed layouts to our new gallery.



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  1. ***** good guide**** We always seem to want to do the right way BUT we need to keep in mind that NO MATTER how we do it. It will come out very nice looking!!! 🙂

  2. love these–esp Amanda’s slope page–great ideas!

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